Have you ever wondered where the expression, “three dog night,” came from? I can tell you! Its origins are attributed to Eskimos, Australian Aborigines, and Cowboys. The meaning remains the same regardless of where it comes from. Three dog night means a night it is so cold a person needs three dogs on the bed to keep warm.
Wyoming, and much of the United States, has been in the grips of below zero temperatures. In our corner of the world we have been holding rather steady at -12º to -16º F at night and -10º to 3º F during the day. In other words, three dog nights and days!
With the temperatures being so cold our three terriers (a Scottie, a Westie, and a Cairn) have been sleeping on the bed with us, so we truly do have three dog nights at our house! All of this togetherness has made us painfully aware of canine halitosis, especially with Dinger, our Scottie. Doggie bad breath is bad…really bad…especially when it wakes you up in the middle of the night…especially when it wakes you up in the middle of the night and it is freezing outside of the covers.
Our three terriers do get daily dental chews to help with tartar build up and promote oral health, but sometimes that isn’t enough. When their breath needs a little help I use the following breath spray.
Canine Oral Spray
In a 2 ounce dark glass spray bottle mix the following ingredients:
1/4 teaspoon Vegetable Glycerin
1 ounce Spearmint (Mentha spicata) Hydrosol
1 ounce Distilled water
2 drops Grapefruit seed extract (GSE) not Grapefruit (Citrus paradisi) essential oil*
1 drop Myrrh (Commiphora myrrha) essential oil
1 drop Rosemary (Rosmarinus officinalis) essential oil
2 drops Spearmint (Mentha spicata) essential oil
*Grapefruit seed extract is used as a preservative, but it also has excellent antibacterial properties that help combat the germs/bacteria that lead to bad breath.
Shake the bottle vigorously before each use. Open dog’s mouth or pull lips apart near the back molars and spray once on each side of the mouth. Spray up to four times daily. I have found that spraying once daily, every day, does the trick.
Essential oil guide lines: Using essential oil remedies with dogs is very similar to using them with very small children (infants and toddlers). With children and dogs I will always use the most gentle of essential oils in the smallest dilutions to be effective. A dilution 25% or ¼ of what is recommended for an adult is typically used for small children and canines. DO NOT use essential oils on puppies younger than ten weeks of age. Additionally, we have to remember that a canine’s sense of smell is 1,000 to 10,000 times more sensitive than a human’s. Given that a dog’s sense of smell is much more efficient than a human’s, what may smell nice for us may be overwhelming and over-powering to a dog.
I hope you don’t have too many three dog nights, and if you do, that your dogs have fresh minty breath!
✿´´¯`•.¸¸ Haly JensenHof, MA, RA ¸¸.•´¯`´✿
Fragrantly helping you achieve health and well being!
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